Saturday, July 30, 2005

Sittin' 'n Spreadin'

Sometimes epiphanies come in a flash of brilliant light and sometimes they hit you with a "Duh-UH-uh!"! My latest was the latter.

So by now you know all about my 50+ pound weight gain in two years (ya-da-ya-da) and I've been playing dumb about the reasons behind this mysterious phenomenon. Then I read the print version of the two-by-fours I needed to hit me up side the head.

First, an Australian study shows the more we sit on our dead asses at work, the greater our chances of gaining weight (like up to six times more). Duh-UH-uh! I went from being a teacher who barely had time for lunch and probably walked 5 miles of hallway each day to someone in an office who, when she isn't sitting, is driving or attending meetings where I am well fed.

Then, the NYTimes reported that women who expect to lose weight by lifting weights are going to be disappointed. There are lots of reasons (you can't build muscle while you are dieting, most women don't use heavy enough weights, etc.) but the best course of action is to do LOTS of cardio for weight loss and when you want to firm up or gain definition, use weights (and don't be afraid to use heavy ones).

I'm not going to call "Duh!" on this last revelation because we are constantly being told that if we build muscle we will speed up weight loss and it's just not as true as we thought.

OK...that's it. The more you sit, the fatter you get. End of story. To take it off, you gotta run or walk while you eat less. Helpful Hint: The NYT also suggests that if you sit all day, take a five-minute walk every hour (that could be up to 40 minutes of walking in a day!). Do you know what this means? I have to actually get ON the treadmill and USE it. No more living in the Valley of De-Nile.

But the folks at the Mayo Clinic are not taking the obesity issue sitting down! They have developed a treadmill workstation that moves at 1 mile per hour and allows you to check your e-mail, make phone calls, etc. I WANT ONE! If you stay on it all day, you could burn up to 1000 calories at work.

My beloved and I sort of rigged up something like this with a music stand holding our laptops at eye level so we can blog or surf while we try to burn calories. It's a little tippy, but it gets us up and moving. And from what I've read, the more we transfer our dead (porky) asses off the couch and onto the treadmill, the sooner we will look like Calista Flockhart and Harrison Ford -- or gosh -- even Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner. Duhhhuhh!


At 11:17 PM, Anonymous Laura said...

No matter what the media tells us is the diet plan du jour (Atkins, South Beach Diet) it's calories in-calories out. If you take more in than you burn, you gain weight. And vice versa. One Starbucks drink can (depending on what drink) be a third of your daily calories.

A Starbucks scone has 460 calories! Have that with a frappuccino, and you have almost exceeded your calories for the day, before lunch.

At 10:16 AM, Blogger DrPezz said...

I know I have heard people complain that "I'm lifting weights everyday, but I'm not losing any of the pounds." Besides, needing the cardio component, people oddly forget that muscle weighs more than fat. The pounds aren't always the measure of health; sometimes the change in body fat percentage reveals much as well.


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